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2014 Oscar Preview: Part 2

Our Oscar coverage continues. Here we overview the best acting and best directing award nominees.

 


BEST ACTOR NOMINEES


 

Christian Bale – American Hustle


Christian-Bale-Wallpaper-2

Age: 40

Previously Best Known For:
Bruce Wayne/Batman – Christopher Nolan’s Batman Trilogy
Patrick Bateman – American Psycho

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Win - Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role 2011 – as Dicky Eklund in The Fighter

Interesting Fact: If he plays an American character, he will use an American accent in all the interviews related to the film. He says he does this so the audience isn't confused

Bruce Dern – Nebraska


Bruce Dern promo 187720244

Age: 77

Previously Best Known For:
Freeman Lowell – Silent Running
Asa Watts – The Cowboys

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role 1979 – as Captain Bob Hyde in Coming Home

Interesting Fact: One of the few actors to play a character to have killed John Wayne on screen (The Cowboys (1972)). He even received some death threats out of it.

Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf of Wall Street 


leonardo-dicaprio-66th-cannes-film-festival-07 1

Age: 39

Previously Best Known For:
Jack Dawson – Titanic
Cobb – Inception

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role 1994 – as Arnie Grape in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role 2005 – Howard Hughes in The Aviator

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role 2007 – Danny Archer in Blood Diamond

Nomination - Best Motion Picture 2013 

Interesting Fact: In May 2009, DiCaprio, along with Kate Winslet and director James Cameron, publicly pledged to support the financial future of the last living Titanic survivor, Millvina Dean, after it was reported that she had been forced to sell her mementos to pay for nursing home bills.

Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years a Slave


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Age: 36

Previously Best Known For:
Luke – Children of Men
Huey Lucas – American Gangster

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
No previous Oscar nominations

Interesting Fact:
He is British, of Nigerian Igbo parentage. His name is pronounced "Chew-eh-tell Edge-ee-oh-for".

Matthew McConaughey – Dallas Buyers Club


matthew-mcconaughey-uk-premiere-magic-mike-02

Age: 44

Previously Best Known For:
Ben Barry – How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
David Wooderson – Dazed and Confused

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
No previous Oscar nominations

Interesting Fact: Police responded to a disturbance call at McConaughey’s home in Austin, Texas in October 1999. When they arrived, music was blaring and he was playing bongo drums in the nude. He was with an unknown man and police attempted to arrest him after spotting illegal drugs. 


BEST ACTRESS NOMINEES


 

Amy Adams – American Hustle


Amy-Adams-amy-adams-966719 1024 768

Age: 39

Previously Best Known For:
Giselle – Enchanted
Charlene Fleming – The Fighter

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:
Nominated - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2006 – as Ashley  Johnsten in Junebug

Nominated - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2009 – as Sister James in Doubt

Nominated - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2011 – as Charlene Fleming in The Fighter

Nominated - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2013 – as Peggy Dodd in The Master

Interesting Fact: Worked in a Hooters Restaurant until soon after she turned 18, when they started making her wear the customary outfits.

Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine 


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Age: 44

Previously Best Known For:
Galadriel – Lord of The Rings Series/Hobbit Series
Queen Elizabeth I – Elizabeth

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1999 – as Queen Elizabeth I in Elizabeth

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2005 – as Katharine Hepburn in The Aviator

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2007 – as Sheba Hart in Notes on a Scandal

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2008 – as Queen Elizabeth I in Elizabeth: The Golden Age

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2008 – as Jude in I’m Not There

Interesting Fact: By winning the Oscar for her portrayal of Katharine Hepburn, she became the first person to give an Oscar-winning portrayal of a previous Oscar winner.

Sandra Bullock – Gravity


Sandra-Bullock-getty

Age: 49

Previously Best Known For:
Gracie Hart – Miss Congeniality
Annie Porter – Speed

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2010 – as Leigh Anne Tuohy in Blind Side

Interesting Fact: Is one of four actresses to win both, the Oscar for Best Actress and the Razzie for Worst Actress, along with Halle Berry, Faye Dunaway and Liza Minnelli. Bullock is the only one to be nominated for and win both awards in the same year (for The Blind Side (2009) and All About Steve (2009))

Judi Dench – Philomena


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Age: 79

Previously Best Known For:
M – James Bond series
Queen Elizabeth I – Shakespeare in Love

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1998 – as Queen Victoria in Mrs. Brown

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 1999 – as Queen Elizabeth in Shakespeare in Love

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2001 – as Armande Voizin in Chocolat

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2002 – as Iris Murdoch in Iris

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2006 – as Laura Henderson in Mrs. Henderson Presents

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2007 – Barbara Covett in Notes on Scandal

Interesting Fact: Her 1999 Oscar was awarded for an eight-minute performance in only four scenes as "Queen Elizabeth I" in Shakespeare in Love (1998). It is the second shortest performance ever to win a Best Supporting Actress Oscar, the only shorter one being Beatrice Straight's six-minute performance in Network (1976).  

Meryl Streep – August: Osage County


Meryl-Streep-50-Cent

 Age: 64

Previously Best Known For:
Miranda Priestly – Devil Wears Prada
Sophie – Sophie Choice

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 1979 – as Linda in The Deer Hunter

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 1980 – as Joanna Kramer in Kramer vs Kramer

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1982 – as Sarah/Anna in The French Lieutenant’s Woman

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1983 – as Sophie in Sophie’s Choice

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1984 – as Karen Silkwood in Silkwood

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1986 – as Karen in Out of Africa

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1988 – as Helen Archer in Ironweed

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1989 – as Lindy Chamberlain in Evil Angels

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1991 – as Suzanne Vale in Postcards from the Edge

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1996 – as Francesca Johnson in The Bridges of Madison County

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 1999 – as Kate Gulden in One True Thing

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2000 – as Roberta Guaspari in Music of the Heart

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role 2003 – as Susan Orlean in Adaptation.

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2007 – as Miranda Priestly in Devil Wears Prada

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2009 – as Sister Aloysius Beauvier in Doubt

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2010 – as Julia Child in Julie & Julia

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role 2012 – as Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady

Interesting Fact: According to Katharine Hepburn's official biographer, A. Scott Berg, Streep was her least favorite modern actress on screen: "Click, click, click," she said, referring to the wheels turning inside Streep's head.


BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR NOMINEES


 Barkhad Abdhi – Captain Phillips 


 Barkhad Abdi

Age: 28

Previously Best Known For: None

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: When he was 7 his family moved from Samali to Yemen to escape the civil war. When he was 14 his family moved to Minneapolis.

Bradley Cooper – American Hustle 


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Age: 39

Previously Best Known For:
Phil – The Hangover
Pat – Silver Linings Playbook

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role 2013 – as Pat in Silver Linings Playbook

Interesting Fact: Was a medalist on the men’s heavyweight Crew team at Georgetown.

Jonah Hill – The Wolf of Wallstreet 


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Age: 30

Previously Best Known For:
Seth – Superbad

Schmidt – 21 Jump Street

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role 2012 – as Peter Brand in Moneyball

Interesting Fact: He has a tattoo on his left forearm that reads β€œNancy Rules”. It is a tribute to his grandmother.

 

Michael Fassbender – 12 Years a Slave

 


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Age: 36

Previously Best Known For:
Magneto – X-Men: First Class

David - Prometheus

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: 12 Years a Slave is the third movie by Steve McQueen that Fassbender has been involved in. The other two were Hunger, and Shame

 

Jared Leto – Dallas Buyer’s Club 


jared leto

Age: 42

Previously Best Known For:
Harry Goldfarb – Requiem for a Dream

Lead Singer of the rockband 30 Seconds to Mars

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: In several movies that he has been in, his character is disfigured in some way; in Requiem for a Dream his arm is amputated, in Fight Club his face is beaten beyond recognition, in Panic Room he is badly burned, in American Psycho he is brutally murdered with an axe, and in Lord of War he is shot several times in the chest. 

 

 


 BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS NOMINEES


 

Sally Hawkins – Blue Jasmine


 

 

Sally-Hawkins-66th-Golden-Globes

Age: 37

Previously Best Known For:
Poppy – Happy-Go-Lucky
Slasher – Layer Cake

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: She was an extra in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace while attending drama school.

Julia Roberts – August: Osage County


julia-roberts-2013-photo

Age: 46

Previously Best Known For:
Vivian Ward – Pretty Woman
Erin Brokovich – Erin Brokovich

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Actress in a Supporting Role in 1990 – as Shelby Eatenton in Steel Magnolias

Nomination - Best Actress in a Leading Role in 1991 – as Vivian Ward in Pretty Woman

Win - Best Actress in a Leading Role in 2001 – as Erin Brokovich in Erin Brokovich

Interesting Fact: A 9000 year old female skeleton excavated Bulgaria in 2004 was named by the archeologist β€œJulia Roberts” because of the perfect teeth that it had.

Lupita Nyong’o – Blue Jasmine


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 Age: 30

Previously Best Known For: None

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: While she was raised in Kenya, was actually born in Mexico because her father is a Kenyan senator and was travelling abroad.  

Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle


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Age: 23

Previously Best Known For:
Katniss Everdeen – The Hunger Games
Tiffany – Silver Linings Playbook

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in 2011 – Ree in Winter’s Bone

Win - Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in 2013 – Tiffany in Silver Lining’s Playbook

Interesting Fact: At the age of 23 she became the youngest actress ever to be nominated for three Oscars, including one win.

 

June Squibb – Nebraska

 


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Age: 84

Previously Best Known For: 

Helen Schmidt – About Schmidt

Helen – Meet Joe Black

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins: None

Interesting Fact: Her mother played piano for silent movies in the 1920’s.

 

 


BEST DIRECTOR NOMINEES 


 

 

Alfonso CaurΓ³n – Gravity


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Age: 52


Previously Best Known For:
Children of Men

Y Tu Mama Tambien

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Writing, Original Screenplay in 2003 – Y Tu Mama Tambien

Nomination - Best Achievement in Film Editing in 2007 – Children of Men

Nomination - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 2007 – Children of Men

Nomination - Best Achievement in Film Editing in 2014 – Gravity

Nomination - Best Motion Picture of the Year in 2014 – Gravity

Interesting Fact: He had never read any of the Harry Potter books when he was offered the chance to direct the third film.

 

Steve McQueen – 12 Years a Slave


steve mcqueen

Age: 44

Previously Best Known For:
Hunger

Shame

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Motion Picture of the Year in 2014 – 12 Years a Slave

Interesting Fact: Was made the official War Artist in Iraq in association with the Imperial War Museum in 2003.

 

David O. Russell – American Hustle


Popular-Hollywood-Actors-David-o-Russell

Age: 55

Previously Best Known For:
Silver Linings Playbook

The Fighter

Three Kings

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2011 – The Fighter

Nomination - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 2013 – Silver Linings Playbook

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2013 – Silver Linings Playbook

Nomination - Best Writing, Original Screenplay in 2014 – American Hustle

Interesting Fact: The only director to help two consecutively released films that were nominated for Academy Awards in all acting categories.

 

Martin Scorsese – The Wolf of Wallstreet


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Age: 71

Previously Best Known For:
Raging Bull

Goodfellas

The Departed

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Director in 1981 – Raging Bull

Nomination - Best Director in 1989 – The Last Temptation of Christ

Nomination - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 1991 – Goodfellas

Nomination - Best Director in 1991 – Goodfellas

Nomination - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 1994 – The Age of Innocence

Nomination - Best Director in 2003 – Gangs of New York

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2005 – The Aviator

Win - Best Achievement in Directing in 2007 – The Departed

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2012 – Hugo

Nomination - Best Motion Picture in 2012 – Hugo

Nomination - Best Motion Picture in 2014 – The Wolf of Wallstreet

Interesting Fact: He personally spurns the notion of the director’s cut, feeling that once a film has been completed it should not be further altered in any way.

 

Alexander Payne – Nebraska


alexanderpayne

Age: 53

Previously Best Known For:
The Descendants

Sideways

About Schmidt

Previous Oscar Nominations/Wins:

Nomination - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 2000 – Election

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2005 – Sideways

Win - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 2005 – Sideways

Nomination - Best Achievement in Directing in 2012 – The Descendants

Nomination - Best Motion Picture in 2012 – The Descendants

Win - Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay in 2012 – The Descendants

 

Interesting Fact: He studied Spanish and History at Stanford.


For Part 1 of our 2014 Oscar Coverage, click here

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